USA Basketball will on Thursday announce a 28-player pool for the next three summers featuring a wide variety of American standouts stretching from Miami's reigning MVP LeBron James to mercurial Sacramento Kings big man DeMarcus Cousins to Atlanta Hawks shooting specialist Kyle Korver, according to sources familiar with USAB plans.
Sources told ESPN.com that the formal announcement Thursday morning from USAB chairman Jerry Colangelo and coach Mike Krzyzewski will be headlined by well-known stars such as James, Chris Paul and Carmelo Anthony -- none of whom are expected to compete at the 2014 World Cup of Basketball in Spain -- but will also include a number of the game's rising talents while also keeping injured Team USA vets Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook in the fold.
ESPN.com has obtained a copy of the complete 28-man list from which Colangelo and Krzyzewski will choose 12-man rosters for both the World Cup which starts in late August and the 2016 Olympics in Brazil. The other national-team veterans to make the cut alongside James, Paul, Anthony, Rose and Westbrook are Kevin Durant, Kevin Love, James Harden, Dwight Howard, Stephen Curry, Deron Williams, Tyson Chandler, Andre Iguodala and Anthony Davis.
Durant and Love committed last summer to playing in this year's tournament in Spain -- which runs from Aug. 30-Sept. 14 -- with Harden also expected to join them. Davis is considered another young cornerstone within USAB and is widely seen as another lock to be on the 12-man squad bound for Spain after going to the 2012 Olympics as a 12th man before he had even played an NBA game. Yahoo! Sports, meanwhile, reported Wednesday that Howard has also registered "an intent" to play in the World Cup later this summer after back surgery forced him to pull out of the London Games.
To go with those 14 players who have all already played for Krzyzewski at either the 2010 World Championships in Turkey or the Olympics -- or both -- ESPN.com has learned that USAB will also name 14 players Thursday that have yet to appear in a game at senior national-team level.
Paul George, Blake Griffin, LaMarcus Aldridge, Kyrie Irving and Damian Lillard are the standouts from that group, but USAB has thrown in a few surprises by naming Cousins and Detroit's blossoming big man Andre Drummond to the pool along with perimeter specialists Bradley Beal, Gordon Hayward, Klay Thompson and Korver, high-flying forward Kenneth Faried, versatile swingman Kawhi Leonard and the experienced David Lee. Griffin, though, would have been on the 2012 Olympic squad if not for an injury in practice that summer that opened the door for Davis.
The only member of Kryzewski's 2012 Olympic roster who will not continue in the program is Kobe Bryant, who reiterated earlier this week what he's been saying for two years now that London was always earmarked to be his Team USA swansong. The Miami duo of Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, who helped the United States win gold as far back as the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, are both headed for free agency this summer and were likewise not expected to be part of the national-team pool.
Team USA will get the summer of 2015 off only if it wins the World Cup in Spain. If the Americans finish second or worse, they will have to participate in the 2015 qualifying for the 2016 Olympics.
Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau is hopeful that Rose will be able to participate as a part of Team USA this summer. Thibodeau, the Team USA assistant, wants Rose to have the experience of playing among the world's best again.
"I'm hopeful that he will participate and he'll be selected," Thibodeau said after the Bulls' win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday night. "But a lot depends on where his health is. But I thought it was a great experience for him in the past. I know how much he enjoyed it. I know USA Basketball feels about him. I think it's a great honor and a privilege and hopefully it will work out."
Rose tore the medial meniscus in his right knee on Nov. 22nd and was ruled out by the Bulls after having surgery to repair the injury on Nov. 25. He has only played in 50 games over the past three seasons.
Information from ESPNChicago's Nick Friedell was used in this report.